Dopa-Responsive Dystonia: Functional Analysis of Single Nucleotide Substitutions within the 5’ Untranslated GCH1 Region
Armata, Ioanna A.
Kuster, John K.
Armatas, Andreas A.
Multhaupt-Buell, Trisha J.
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CitationArmata, I. A., L. Balaj, J. K. Kuster, X. Zhang, S. Tsai, A. A. Armatas, T. J. Multhaupt-Buell, et al. 2013. “Dopa-Responsive Dystonia: Functional Analysis of Single Nucleotide Substitutions within the 5’ Untranslated GCH1 Region.” PLoS ONE 8 (10): e76975. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0076975. http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0076975.
AbstractBackground: Mutations in the GCH1 gene are associated with childhood onset, dopa-responsive dystonia (DRD). Correct diagnosis of DRD is crucial, given the potential for complete recovery once treated with L-dopa. The majority of DRD associated mutations lie within the coding region of the GCH1 gene, but three additional single nucleotide sequence substitutions have been reported within the 5’ untranslated (5’UTR) region of the mRNA. The biologic significance of these 5’UTR GCH1 sequence substitutions has not been analyzed. Methodology/Principal Findings Luciferase reporter assays, quantitative real time PCR and RNA decay assays, combined with bioinformatics, revealed a pathogenic 5’UTR GCH1 substitution. The +142C>T single nucleotide 5’UTR substitution that segregates with affected status in DRD patients, substantially attenuates translation without altering RNA expression levels or stability. The +142C>T substitution disrupts translation most likely by creating an upstream initiation start codon (uAUG) and an upstream open reading frame (uORF). Conclusions/Significance: This is the first GCH1 regulatory substitution reported to act at a post-transcriptional level, increasing the list of genetic diseases caused by abnormal translation and reaffirming the importance of investigating potential regulatory substitutions in genetic diseases.
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